UK & World News
Astronaut On Scariest Space Station Moment
An astronaut on the International Space Station has revealed his scariest moment - watching a large meteorite burn up over Australia.
Colonel Chris Hadfield, 53, a former Royal Canadian Air Force fighter pilot, is on board the ISS as the leader of Expedition 35.
Col Hadfield, who has also flown two space shuttle missions, blasted off for the ISS on December 19 on board a Russian Soyuz TMA-07M.
He has been keeping in touch with followers on Earth using social news site Reddit to host a question-and-answer session.
Reddit user unfortunatelyhuman asked him: "Which part of the world looks the coolest from space?"
The astronaut, who has been tweeting pictures from space, replied: "Australia looks coolest - the colours and textures of the Outback are severely artistic.
"The most beautiful to me are the Bahamas, the vast glowing reefs of every shade of blue that exists."
But it was also while the space station was over Australia that he admitted he had had his most scary moment - the meteorite encounter.
He wrote: "I watched a large meteorite burn up between me and Australia.
"To think of that hypersonic dumb lump of rock randomly hurtling into us instead sent a shiver up my back."
Last Friday, a meteor exploded over the Ural Mountains in Russia, releasing a shockwave that shattered thousands of windows and left well over 1,000 people injured.
Col Hadfield answered some questions about day-to-day life on the ISS, explaining: "We live on Greenwich time, UTC, same as London England. We shut off most lights at bedtime - it feels right to do it."
He was asked whether the crew could ever get any privacy, and answered: "I'm typing now in my 'Sleep Station', a small padded room with a door, completely private, like a bedroom without the bed, and phone booth sized."
Col Hadfield - who sports facial hair - also showed he is maintaining his sense of humour in space.
Reddit user bigdubsy asked him: "If you discover intelligent life, who should play you in the movie?"
He replied: "Someone with a good moustache."